Archive for August, 2016

The 2016 ASA Scavenger Hunt

Over the past few weeks my inbox has been inundated with people saying things like “You haven’t posted much lately but I hope that you’ll still do the ASA Scavenger Hunt!” and “MAGIKARP DEMANDS TO KNOW WHEN THE SCAVENGER HUNT WILL BE POSTED!!!” and “Find the best Medicare supplement plan.”* Fear not, readers, on the eve of the American Sociological Association’s annual meeting, the hunt is ready to be scavenged. Use a Sharpie to cross off completed items on your computer or mobile phone or, if you prefer, download a PDF version here.

2016 ASA Scavenger Hunt

  1. Attend a friend’s presentation even though it is outside of your area
  2. See somebody playing Pokémon Go during a session
  3. Make a joke about economists
  4. Attend the Sociologists for Justice session on Saturday night
  5. Attend a talk in which the presenter is reading from his or her paper with no apparent preparation
  6. Check out the poster presentations
  7. Time how long it takes the ASA app to load when you haven’t used it recently
  8. Attend a session with fewer than five audience members
  9. Go to a business meeting and sign up for a committee
  10. Overhear a sociologist make a racist/sexist/homophobic (etc.) comment
  11. Talk to somebody about SJMR
  12. Ask a good question in a session
  13. Look at somebody’s nametag in an obvious way
  14. Find the unisex restrooms and rate their implementation on a scale of 1-10
  15. Attend DAN and/or a department reception
  16. Get a free drink at a section reception
  17. Go to the blogging party, say you’re John Smith
  18. Talk to somebody from a liberal arts school about his or her research
  19. Talk to somebody from a research school about his or her teaching
  20. Talk to somebody on the job market about his or her ideal job
  21. Introduce two people you know to each other
  22. For Faculty: Buy a student coffee or a meal; For Students: Accept coffee or a meal from a faculty member
  23. Eat a meal alone, confidently
  24. Talk to somebody whose name you can’t remember
  25. Post on social media about ASA
  26. Catch up with a colleague from another institution
  27. Visit the Space Needle
  28. Spend an entire day in Seattle without attending a session
  29. Get a coffee at Starbucks, ironically
  30. Complain about the heat

*Only one of these is an actual e-mail I received.

“Like” Memoirs of a SLACer on Facebook to receive information about scavenger hunts and Medicare supplement plans via your news feed.

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The goal of being on the tenure track is to receive tenure and there is lots of available advice about how to do that. There is less information available about what happens when tenure is denied. Even when our colleagues are denied tenure, it can be hard to find out the details while respecting the fact that they likely do not want to talk about the situation. For these reasons, recent guest posts at Historiann and a blog started in May by Jennifer Diascro are intriguing (and often frustrating and devastating).

“Hannah” at Historiann recounts her experience with a Dean who seemed to be against her case from the start, despite the support of colleagues, and her successful appeal the next year. Diascro, who had been previously tenured at the University of Kentucky, details her experiences with tenure denial at American University where the messages she received from her colleagues leading up to the tenure decision directly contradicted their recommendation. Hannah’s account is interesting, but Diascro’s is even more illuminating due to her willingness to post many of the documents from her tenure case at AU.

Both stories have (eventual) happy endings, which probably makes their authors more willing to share their experiences but makes them no less illuminating.

“Like” Memoirs of a SLACer on Facebook to receive updates and links via your news feed (sometimes frequently, sometimes less so).

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